Water Baby

20 07 2011

I think I have one! Oh my, does he love the water! He learned just how much when we were in Texas (I still owe you some pictures and videos of that good fun). This week, we got one warm (72°) day and decided to hit up Greenlake to enjoy the sunshine. It turns out the wading pool was open. I wasn’t sure how Carter would feel about it as he does tend to clam up in new situations sometimes. Not this time. He sat in my lap while I dipped my toes in the pool. Then I tried to dip his toes in the pool. He immediately stuck his little legs out at a 90° angle demanding to sit in that water.

I didn’t have his swimsuit on, so I just plopped him back in my lap while we watched the action. But he would have nothing to do with that. Squirmy pants mcgee wanted to be in the middle of the action.

I stripped his shorts and sat him down. He immediately started splashing and giggling.

ah, so nice and cool in here!

Surprising me and himself with splashing his face and not getting upset about it!

splash splash splash!

And then he was off. He did not want to sit still. Not one bit. The pool is about 75 yards long, maybe? It gets deeper (probably about 2 feet deep) in the middle. At one point after chasing him, I stopped helicoptering stepped back a tad and let him crawl thinking he would turn back when it got too deep. I finally stepped in as the water got to his chin. He would have kept going.

gotta go talk to that cute baby girl with the belly

I tried to force him into some breaks as his knees and tops of feet were getting skinned up from the gravel bottom (talk about pool toe!). He was a little more content in the deeper waters.

cooling his jets for a minute

When we got out of the water, I dried him off and put him back in his non swim diaper and shorts which was a major challenge. Diapering has become a battle (you’d think it was baby torture) as it is since he started crawling, but now that he was so near his beloved water? Oh my. I finally strapped him back into the stroller to go home and he was a pouty pants about it. He usually is pretty easy going about being strapped in and going places with me. Not that day!!

staring longingly at the water

He drowned his sorrows in his sippy cup full of cool water. He drank the whole thing on the way back to the car (I’ve struggled to get him to take more than 1-2 good sips per day!).

depressed about leaving the pool

I suspect the Greenlake wading pool will become a summer stop off for the Lpod. So much fun!

The Spoilers Come to Town

26 05 2011

Two of Carter’s biggest fans came to visit last week! Scott had his first week of school and was headed down to the Bay Area, so Mimi & PopPop decided to come help me out. It had nothing to do with the fact that they wanted to love on sweet CJ. Our week was packed full and come Tuesday morning our house was quiet again. Apparently too quiet for my child who discovered his screeching capabilities over the weekend.

We were fortunate enough to have some amazing weather. So we went to the park to swing on the swings.

save me from the swing

CJ wasn’t a huge fan. Once again. He liked the swings the first time. Since then: “Meh. Get me out of here!”

i said save me, don't make me do it again!

We rode on the merry go round. Which apparently is very fun after a few minutes!

spin spin spin. upchuck blueberries? maybe.

We went down to Pike Place Market to get some fresh produce and flowers. We wound up with a lot more than that. The market is dangerously delicious that way.

rows and rows of goodness

Thankfully, we hit it up in the morning before the major crowds showed up.

hiding under his hat. vampire baby thinks the sun is too bright.

The Copper River Salmon season began the day mom & dad came into town. The market was full of the delicious fish. We picked some up from the Ballard Fisherman’s terminal later in the week to grill.

get your fresh copper river!

We went to Ray’s Boathouse to soak up some rays while taking in the views of the lovely Puget Sound. Carter is really enjoying sitting in the highchair at restaurants now. No more infant seat, he’s a big kid now!

dining al fresco for the first time in for.ever.

We picnicked at Greenlake with some of our friends. I think I enjoyed my  last picnic with a stationary child. The other mommas were chasing their children to the lake and beyond. Crawling and walking and running will come soon enough. For now, I love my sitting munchkin!

picnicking with my buddy

We went to Fremont’s Sunday Market to pick up baubles and treats!

searching for hidden treasures

We were silly and ate our socks. That kid likes when he makes his Mimi laugh.

being silly

We wandered through the arboretum and stood under a “snowing” cherry tree.

it's raining cherries! hallelujah!

And checked out the amazing Azaleas, Lilacs and Rhododendrons.

bright pink azaleas

All along Azalea Way!

azalea way

We showed off our teeth! Two more are making their way in these days.

teefs. lots and lots of em.

And we blew bubbles.

what. is. this?

Lots and lots of bubbles.

can i catch it?

We tried to catch them, but didn’t have that much luck.

maybe this one?

Most of all, we laughed. We had a lot of good times with Mimi & PopPop in town.

ha ha. poppop! did you see that over there?

They love to spoil CJ in the best way possible. Lots of hugs and kisses.

hey, mimi, you come here too!

And always willing to help CJ learn something new.

hi mimi!

I left out the weeding, planting, chair fixing, nail pulling, curtain installing, map hanging, cooking, shopping, and voting they did too. My house hasn’t had this much fun in ages! Those are two efficient people!

happy as a clam

Thank you for the visit, mom & dad. The time you share with us up here is so precious. You made our week without daddy a lot more fun than it would have been otherwise! Love you both!

Earth’s Belly Laugh?

18 04 2011

***warning – this post is full of self indulgent pictures of carter. unlike the rest of this blog these days.***
(why didn’t they invent the sarcasm font?)

Well, we were a couple of days early. Maybe even a mere 18 hours early. But we hit up the tulip fields in The Skagit Valley on Sunday. The daffodils were in full glory, and some tulip fields had popped. But yesterday afternoon and today we got a lot of sun and the fields REALLY popped as seen on the news this evening.

Maybe Carter and I should go back while daddy is at work this week? Hmmm…..

Who would take pictures of he and I together?

And what good are they without Scott?

He’s the one who makes Carter laugh.

And helps me take the collection bins to place my sweet child.

So others can take his picture. It’s something about babies and flowers, I suppose. I’m confident in my pre-Carter years I took pictures of unkown munchkins in tulip fields. Maybe it’s their innocence paired with natural beauty?

It’s almost intoxicating.

Oh? Sorry. Was that too much? Kids are sweet. Flowers are pretty. Is that okay?

Ahh. Better. Smiling boy.

His face below looks like “seriously mom. STOP embarrassing me. okaaaaaay, that’s funny.”

And this is just one of my most favorite pictures of all time.

He’s sitting in the mud. I think he likes it!

No, wait. Really! Guys!

I was tellin’ a joke!

And the chicken said….

Sorry. I get side tracked easily these days. I have a little ham on my hands (nooooo, I was talking about Carter, not Scott!). We had a great family adventure up to Skagit Valley. I’ll be sure to keep you guys up to date if we go back this week (sun is to be expected despite the SNOW that fell on us this morning).

Stand Off

29 09 2010

On Tuesday after our doctor’s appointment where we learned that no new progress is being made on the delivery front, Scott decided to distract me and take me to the beach about 2 miles from our house. We sat there to watch the sun set. It was so beautiful and peaceful. This time of year is great. The weather is a little chancy, the kids are back in school, and the beaches are quiet. And sometimes you catch a beautiful, warm evening.

september sunset

It had been pretty cloudy all day, but warm. It’s unseasonably warm right now, but those who think our summer was too cool are loving it! I too am loving it. I’m not quite ready for hats and scarves … or the heater in the house. Some of the fall color is making it’s way out though. It won’t be long before the hillsides are covered in red, orange and gold. I love the change of leaves, it’s beautiful.

the start of fall

The sunset was great, thanks to the clouds we had.

i was trying to block the sun with that big ole belly

A park ranger was cleaning up some barricades when we got there. It turns out a baby seal pup was hanging out on the beach all day. We just missed seeing him, but there were a lot of seals hanging out just off the shore. A guy showed up just after we did with his fishing rod and some waders. He hopped in the water and was fly fishing right there off the beach. We noticed he kept moving around and stopping, trying to figure out where to go next. Then we saw why. That little dot just past him is a silly harbor seal. The two of them had a stand off for dinner, I suppose. The seal wouldn’t budge and was just staring down the fisherman. We were all laughing pretty hard. I think the seal won and got his dinner. The fisherman probably had to stop at the grocery store on the way home.

a funny stand off

I guess it was a stand off sort of like me and little CJ. I want him to show up, he’s late. He’s got no interest. Where are you little guy? You coming to meet us soon?

Ehplains, Boats, and Balls, Oh My!

20 08 2010

A big heat wave hit Seattle while our visitors were here. Funny how that happens. We set records when all you Texans came up for our wedding and we had 4 days of 90° and higher temps when you all came back. Interesting. 🙂 We decided to take advantage of the heat and hit the lake. This was Piper’s first trip on a boat. I’m not sure she was too keen on it at first. She fussed for a second when we put on the life jacket, but got over it. She sat very stiff for a long time like the below picture. Just in my lap stiff as a board, only moving her eyes.

what are you people doing to me?

Then I handed her off to her momma and Mimi. She loosened up a little. Kind of.

seriously. this thing is uncomfortable. and why is there no car seat?

And then we started moving (7 knots) and she started saying “wheeeeeeeeeeeee” in this really soft voice. It made us all laugh, so she laughed with us.

ok. this is ... wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee ... fun.

We took the long way to Lake Washington and cruised the houseboats of Lake Union (as per usual with all of our precious, delicate cargo these days). All of the adults were wowed at the parking job of the big ole yacht between the two houses. Mimi or Melissa said “Holy Moly!!” and Piper repeated “Holy Moly!!!” over and over again. We tried to get it on video, but she was on to us.

holy moly parking job

Of course, Lake Union has the Kenmore Air landing strip, so there were tons and tons of ehplains ehplains ehplains to be seen. Piper has some excellent hearing and vision. Before any of us even knew what was going on she had spotted the airplanes and would tell us about them. I think she liked seeing the float planes so close up.

ehplain ehplain ehplain

She was very snuggly with her mom on this trip. I like to think that she was having so much fun that she was thanking her momma for bringing her to Seattle with lots of hugs and kisses. 🙂

lucky daughter, lucky momma

We even got her to wear her sunglasses for a little bit. She juts out her chin to try to hold them on.

cool kid

She looks like a Seattle girl to me, she knows how to appreciate that sunshine.

o my goodness, i love seattle!

We floated past Bill Gates’ house. Most of it is underground, but it’s a very large compound with several houses on the property. I like how low profile it is, quite beautiful!

maybe we can make this the family compound?

I’d say this girl was over her discomfort within a few minutes of boating. By this point, she was holding on to the Bimini top and checking out the world around her. She was singing quietly or calling out the ehplains the whole way around the lake.

let's rename this lake to piper's lake

More hugs for momma.

sweet moments

On the way back to the slip, we pulled off at the public docks at Ivar’s for some fish and chips. Once again pushing this little girl’s limits and she just went with it. I hope baby Lpod was taking lessons.

fish and chips at ivar's

We finished dinner and made way for the slip, I’d say Piper was pretty comfortable on the boat and with the life jacket by then, huh?

im the king of the world!

We caught a glimpse of the sun dropping behind the Olympic Mountains on our way back in. It was a perfect day!

august sunset over the olympics

I hope we’ll get to take the other cousins on a boat ride some time in the near future. They were sorely missed. Next time, ok? PopPop, you need to come check out your old friend Hot Water to make sure we’re taking good care of it.

Summer Streets

19 08 2010

Melissa, Piper, and Mimi came up to Seattle last weekend for a quick visit. We had so much fun. It’s not easy to get to Seattle in the summer. It’s a lot more expensive if you are paying and the flights are significantly fuller if you are flying on a pass, making every single flight one of those “I guess I could be sleeping in El Paso for two nights” kind of flights. I grew up flying that way. It’s not fun. The only time that was fun was when we were stuck in San Francisco trying to get out to Honolulu. But really? We were all a little stressed about when we would get to Honolulu to truly enjoy SFO (not to mention I got a wickedly huge splinter in my foot from walking on a log on a freezing cold beach in SFO). I was 12, I remember it well. I even remember what I was wearing the day I got the splinter. Flying that way was actually was a lot of fun. I’m a master at plotting routes around the country and I understand the airline business well. My husband loathes it – I still feel like I need to be at the airport more than 2 hours before the flight is scheduled to depart. This drives him absolutely bananas.

As I began weaving you through my travels as a child, I forgot I was telling you about a visit from part of my family.
*focus, focus, focus*
What I was trying to say by telling you how hard it is to get to Seattle was to articulate how much it meant to me that they made it up here. Summer is fun in Seattle and we get a few rare visitors that time of year. So thanks ladies for making it happen, baby Lpod, Cott and I loved it!

On Friday during the day, we ladies did a little shopping. Poor Piper was still pretty off kilter from the all day travel the day before and the 2 hour time difference, so we got her home for a good, long nap. That evening, our neighborhood had “Summer Streets” where the city of Seattle shuts down a major street to all motor traffic and the businesses stay open late, sponsor artists, have food tastings, art showings, etc. It’s always a neat community feel and fun to get out in the neighborhood. We loaded Piper up in the BOB (check it out Carolyn, Cindy, Janet & Pam!!!) and walked over to the neighborhoods major “retail core” to check out the festivities.

testing out the bob

There were many performing artists participating while we were out there.

some strings for our walk

We got there early with the stroller brigade. As we were walking back toward home, the streets were really filling up. This year’s went all the way into one of our sister neighborhoods and was a little over a mile long.

listening to a live singer and hanging out on the curb

At one point, I was wondering if “torturing cats” was one of the arts on display out here, but then turned to find this little boy marching with a clarinet making an awful racket. It made us laugh really hard. I like that he chose the Better Hearing Center for his choice of business to torture. I hope no one discovered their hearing aid was turned too loud during his performance.

boy disrupting pleasant live music

We made it home, happy baby in tact and ready for bed.

just missing mimi

But not before we got some giggles for Uncle Cott. He’s so silly.

Hot Water? Meet Colder Waters!

12 06 2010

Despite all the hooplah in Hawaii about pregnant women not being able to boat, we took Hot Water on her maiden voyage in the Pacific Northwest last weekend. In between some major storms and cold weather, we got a blast of heat. Mid-70s, virtually no wind and total sunshine! We took advantage. We gave the marina a quick call in the morning and told them we’d come to the boat around noon.

We showed up a little later than expected (shocking) and pretty much no one was there. The owner of our marina was there picking up his old wooden 40 something foot luxury to go hang out off the shores of Seward Park in Lake Washington with his family for the day.

When we call, they use a crane to pull Hot Water off her dry storage rack and put her on an elevator of sorts and into the water. The crane operator has a full set of plugs and makes sure the boat is plugged/unplugged with each in/out of the water transaction. It was a small point of “oh, crap” for us when Scott found Hot Water’s actual plug in a cup holder. We later learned of the plug system. Whew! Crisis #1 averted.

unsnapping the canvas, looking for the plug

There were no pictures of getting out of the marina. That could be considered a crisis scenario. You basically have to learn how to wedge a boat out of a tiny spot with little to no steering power. You thought parallel parking when you were 16 was rough. In all reality, Scott was amazing and with just a few little pushes off the dock by me and Ollie, we were out of there, but alas, no pictures.

We are basically parked at the very tail end of the ship channel. Just before you hit the salt water of the Puget Sound. We have a speed limit of 7kts for several miles to get to the open water. You come across many kayakers amongst the ship docks.

some good perspective

And then there’s the famous Seattle houseboats. That’s my kind of city living. Their houses float on a dock, they have to be proven sea-worthy once per year to be able to stay on the lake.

typical. boat is bigger than the house

We have to go under many bridges on the way to the lake. The smaller bridge is the Fremont Bridge, the taller being Aurora.

fremont and aurora

Pretty much the whole shipping channel is lined with the unique houseboats. Some are absolutely giant, others are little 2 bedroom, 1 bath cottages. One of the partners at my old firm had a mansion on the south end of Mercer Island (we’ll get you some pics of Mercer Island on our next boating journey) and a cottage on Lake Union for the summer. My kind of city living!

city living...love the pac nw

The dogs in Seattle LOVE to boat. We saw tons of them at the bow barking away with their tails a-wagging.

captain of his ship

Once we hit Lake Union, we did a small circle to check out what restaurants around the lake had mooring. Planning our future excursions or thinking of one night where I say “hey, sun doesn’t go down till 10, let’s take the boat to dinner.” 🙂 Lake Union has some interesting complications. First being it’s a freaking runway.

float plane coming in for his landing

…for all the float planes of Kenmore Airlines. Kenmore goes to surrounding islands and a few other locations. Their “hub” so to speak is Lake Union. You kind of hear their roar and go “crud, where do we go?” Before our next trip, we will do a little reading to make sure we are following all of the rules, but the pilots appear to be quite well versed in maneuvering the pleasure boats on the water.

talk about squeezing in to tight spaces

Lake Union is another 7kt zone, so we decided we were ready to stretch Hot Water’s legs and hit Lake Washington. We had to go through the Montlake Cut, under the University Bridge, past Husky Stadium (will the Aggies be playing there soon?????? Go Pac10???)  and into the deep glacier fed waters of Lake Washington.

university bridge

The cut is basically owned by the University of Washington crew teams. They paint the retaining walls with motivational sayings and each class gets something fun to paint. I liked the one below best.

hard work pays off

One of my absolute favorite parts of boating: laughing at the lubbers sitting in traffic on 520. Many of you have received many phone calls from me while I sit in this trainwreck of traffic daily. Scott drives it twice a day too, it’s pretty darn miserable. I usually curse under my breath at the skiers and wakeboarders having fun in the water while we just sit. And sit. And sit. On our way to sit. And sit. And sit at a computer.

ha ha. who sits in gridlock on saturdays? not i.

Even Miss Rainier came out to play last weekend!


We made a stop by my old place to see if any of my buddies were hanging out on the dock. Only one person was out, maybe they just don’t hang out there anymore since I moved? Probably. My friend Jeff still has my noodles and blow up Orca, I hope he’s taking good care of them.

my old digs at madison park

Once we got into Kirkland (the east side of the lake – where Microsoft is and Bill Gates lives…), we tucked into a little area called Cozy Cove. It’s pretty quiet and off the main channel of the lake, keeping the waters a little calmer. We’ve decided it’s where the lucky ones who were working at Microsoft before Microsoft was the giant it is live. Beautiful homes, most with a large motor yacht and a “small” ski boat. Many with their own float planes. We heard some rattling and turned around to find this coming out of someone’s dock.

cozy cove taxiing

I guess he was taking advantage of the weather as well.

picking up speed

He just cruised right past us and took off.

cozy cove take off

Maybe he was off to the San Juan Islands for the night? That’s 100% what I’d do.

wonder what's going through the pilot's head?

Bye! Say hi to Friday Harbor for us!

probably "c u l8tr seattle"

Scott then needed to take a conference call for work. So we appropriately pulled up to his office. We moored (for free) at his office where I went to get a cold drink at Starbucks and Scott took his meeting. His office has the little plant in the yellow pot in the window.

where my husband usually is

We had dinner at a little lake front restaurant and decided the clouds were rolling in, the winds picking up, and it was time to hit the water to get back to Seattle for the night.

clouds are rolling in

Our little break of sunshine was coming to a close for the weekend.

later rainey, catch you next weekend

We had one last shot of downtown before heading down the ship canal.

city boating is fun!

Don’t feel sorry for us. The rain came in and stuck around all week. But guess what? Today it’s going to be 80°. EIGHTY!!! So, we’re going to finish up on our computers, clean the house and hit the water for the afternoon. Have a great weekend everyone!